1 Tahrcountry Musings: Climate change plays havoc with wildlife in UK

Monday, December 29, 2008

Climate change plays havoc with wildlife in UK

The National Trust of UK has come up with a study, which shows the impact of climate change on UK’s wildlife. According to the trust UK wildlife is struggling to cope with erratic and unseasonal weather, which has taken its toll for a second consecutive year. Species under threat include puffins, marsh fritillary butterflies and lesser horseshoe bats.

The unusual seasonal patterns include the following.
•Snowdrops and red admiral butterflies were first spotted in January, earlier than normal.
• Bees were hit hard in April by frost and snow
• Rain in late May caused many birds' nests to fail, including those of the blue and great tits, because of the lack of insect food
• It was a poor summer for migrant insects - butterflies, moths, hoverflies, ladybirds and dragonflies - because of the wet and cold June
• In July, puffin numbers on the Farne Islands were down 35% on what they had been five years earlier
• The common autumn cranefly, usually in best proportions in September, was all but absent.

The trust concludes that climate change is not some future prediction of what might happen, it's happening now.

I feel that this piece of information from UK calls for an immediate study of the impact of climate change on India’s wildlife also. A pointer is the erratic birth of Nilgiri Tahr in Eravikulam National Park, Munnar, Kerala. It used to occur with clockwork precision in the first week of January. This is now getting delayed by more than one month. The distribution pattern of the animal inside park is also showing drastic changes. It is time to act.

4 comments:

kssudhi said...

mohanji, cud u pls elaborate on the "distribution pattern of the animal inside park is also showing drastic changes" as u wrote in thew blog?
sudhi.

Mohan Alembath said...

Sudhi, there is a definite shift in the homerange of the animals. This could also be due to the changes in the burning regime of the park . Only a detailed scientific study can unravel the details.
The recruitment has also come down. It used to be 15to 29%. It has come down to less than 10%

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Mohan Alembath said...

Hi Betty,
Thanks for the comments